By Jubin Katiraie

Two people in Qom, Iran, have died from the coronavirus (COVID19) an Iranian health official said on Wednesday. 

Kianush Jahanpur, the Ministry of Health Head of Public Relations and Information Center, said that the two people died in a hospital in the Holy City, which is 140 km south of the capital, due to respiratory illnesses. 

While the head of the city’s University of Medical Sciences, Mohammad Reza Qadir, said that over the past four days there has been an increase in respiratory illnesses in the city, but that there is no need for everyone to wear masks. The only people that should use masks are those with “special illnesses”. 

Qadir said: “We are honest with the people and will let them know all the issues that come up. 

However, Iranians donbelieve him. They think that the government is lying to them and hiding the true numbers of people infected with the coronavirus, with social media claiming the actual cases of the virus are much higher. 

After all, experts say the fatality rate is around 2.5%, which would mean that at least 80 other people in Iran are infected with the virus. 

Just one day prior, the Qom University of Medical Sciences said that the two people who died from respiratory illnesses in Qom were not infected with the coronavirus. 

In a statement to the state-run ISNA News Agency, the university said: “There is no evidence that the two deceased patients in Qom were infected with the coronavirus. The two deceased patients had not made any trips outside of the country and did not have any suspicious contacts.” 

Of course, these contradictions are nothing new for the authorities and are just one of the reasons that Iranians have completely lost their trust in the regime. 

Earlier this year, the government took three days to admit that it had shot down a Ukrainian International Airliner and killed 176 civilians, even though the officials knew from day one that the Revolutionary Guards had shot missiles at the plane to make it crash. Even now, they are refusing to hand over the black box despite not knowing how to decrypt it themselves. 

The government has also failed to announce yet how many civilians and protesters the security forces murdered during the nationwide protests in November 2019. Sources on the ground say that at least 1,500 people were killed over just a few days. 

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